Wheels on Meals (1984)

wheelsonmeals_posterWheels on Meals [快餐車] (1984)
AKA Spartan X, Million Dollar Heiress

Starring Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung, Yuen Biao, Lola Forner, Benny Urquidez, Keith Vitali, Pepe Sancho, Paul Chang Chung, Richard Ng, John Shum Kin-Fun, Wu Ma

Directed by Sammo Hung

Expectations: The highest.

fourstar


Wheels on Meals is an old favorite, but it’s one of those movies that slipped through the cracks and I haven’t seen it in over 10 years. In the intervening years many films have come and gone, leaving very little of my memories of this film intact, but that’s OK because watching it this time around was almost like seeing it again for the first time. And with a film as enjoyable as Wheels on Meals, that’s a real gift.

What’s interesting about Wheels on Meals is that on the surface it’s a very simple, almost storyless film. So much of the first half is just random antics and gags, and while they’re all incredibly entertaining, there isn’t a traditional drive to them like you expect a movie to have. But as the film progresses it becomes apparent that the film’s plotting is actually very tight, controlled and slowly bringing the pieces together. In a way it feels similar to the fight choreography of the film; it’s simply flawless.

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Uncle Jasper reviews: Wheels on Meals (1984)

Wheels on Meals [快餐車] (1984)

Starring Jackie Chan, Yuen Biao, Sammo Hung, Lola Forner, Benny Urquidez, Pepe Sancho, Keith Vitali, Richard Ng

Directed By Sammo Hung


To say that Wheels on Meals was one of the most formative viewing experiences in my history of moviegoing would be a gross understatement. Let me rewind the clock for a moment and plop you back into the (very) early ’90s. Collecting cult video was a very social experience back then. There were no such thing as torrents, which reduce finding even the most elusive film to a minor task of a Google search and a few simple mouse clicks. Some films, and even entire genres, were simply the stuff of legend. If you didn’t have proper connections you had two choices. 1) Improve your network of fellow obscure video collectors in hopes that one of them had the tape you’re looking for, or 2) Expect to pay out the ass for a muddy print of the film you wanted, copied onto a blank TDK tape. Back then greedy convention vendors or cult zine mail order sellers could get away with peddling 12th generation pan-and-scan dubs of rare Japanese laserdisc prints or elusive Hong Kong action fare for like 40 bucks a pop. These were your options. So when you finally caved in and threw down the cash for your washed out copy of Meet the Feebles, you were gonna bust out repeat viewings of that film like there was no tomorrow just to get your money’s worth.

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